Please. Don’t EVER Forget!

I started writing a post last night about home decorating and improvement from my “empty nester” point of view.  But when I woke up this morning, there were reminders of this horrific event that is now 15 years old.

Back in the late 1970’s I worked in the WTC.  While I have good memories of working there, I never felt fully “safe” there–the elevators shook and swayed and the building seemed to be a Tower of Babel of sorts.

Probably the most intriguing memory was the morning when Philippe Petit took a highwire stroll across the towers. We all agreed he was a friggin’ nut! But we all wanted him to make it across safely.

Nobody could have imagined the horror that would take place in the future.  The mass murder affected many of us.  I still get emotional when I see the view of Manhattan from across the river. She never looks as “long” anymore.

To date, I’ve not gone to the memorial.  It’s hard because I can visualize the faces with a good number of the names. I don’t want to have a visual of their last moments. It’s too much.

Today, 15 years later, I still get weepy over this. We simply cannot forget.  I’m not going to politicize this. There is no need.  I just want to repost what I wrote last year without a change.

Thanks for understanding.  My humor will return tomorrow!

Anniversaries are reminders of special days. They may not be great reminders and they may be fantastic reminders.

Today is an anniversary of sorts.  It has been 14 years since the catastrophic event of the Twin Towers in New York City.

My then-husband was out of the United States on a business trip.

My oldest son, Jake, had entered into his Freshman year at University of Texas in Austin.

Roman was a Sophomore in high school and Oona was in seventh grade in middle school.

I was home, I was getting dressed and just about to sit at the computer.

Ruby, my Yellow Lab, and Dorothy, my Bassett Hound was at my feet.

The TV was on.

I was not watching the TV, but I heard that a plane crashed into one of the two towers.

My first thought was “Holy shit. I used to work in that building”.

I could not for the life of me, figure out how that could have happened.

Then I thought about how nervous I was working in the WTC to begin with. The elevators drifted from side to side because they worked at such an incredible speed.

The building itself seemed to sway in the winter’s wind.

Then—it happened again and we all knew that something was not right.

The Pentagon exploded.

The plane went down in Pennsylvania.

America, as we know it, changed from an innocent and idealistic child of a country into a geographical and historic grown up.  We were violated and we were wounded by extremist hatred.

Videos and images of bodies jumping from the towers, videos of the crashes, videos of a destroyed downtown were constantly aired to keep us informed.

Those images were horrific.

Worse than that, were the videos of the extremists who were living in these United States of America, celebrating these horrific events.  Celebrating because they are filled with hatred.  Celebrating because they are bigoted against Western society, yet they seemed to enjoy living in this society.

I remember losing people I grew up with. Losing people who lived in my neighborhood in NYC.

I remember one of my former playground moms having a son who was a waiter at “Windows On The World”.   A while later his arm was found. He was identified by his tattoo.

His tattooed arm was  closure.

Another young neighborhood kid was a fireman who went into the building and never made it out.

One of my cousins, a battalion chief for the NYFD, took the morning off so that his wife could go to the doctor.  His entire battalion was killed.  My cousin, Patrick,  died seven months later.

That day, it seemed that the world was on our side.

That day, it seemed like our entire being as Americans were bound together.

We aren’t though.

We still have hatred and bigotry in our own back yard.  We have hatred toward the LBGT community.

Hatred and bigotry still live within the confines of our borders in the form of politicians and “Christian” extremists.

People get pissed off because security measures at airports are too strict and those measures cut into their selfish time.

People get pissed off because, in trying to make our beautiful country a safer place for her citizens, they don’t want stricter gun laws.

People get pissed off because they don’t believe that others should be able to love who they want to love.

When will we learn?

I haven’t forgotten. But I certainly am not yet ready to forgive the evil that still dwells among us.

THIS is the image I chose to remember the anniversary of 9/11 with. The cross is hope. It is of a cross that was found at the site and taken to rest at Good Shepherd Church–my old parish in Inwood.  Many parishioners were murdered that day…..


There are no words………….

Hope that one day, we will all be able to accept others as they are and the world will be a better place.

Listen. Hope is great…and I always attach a song. Today, I’m still doing that, but it’s a happy and hopeful one.  “High Hopes”—because that is what we all need! XOXOXOXO!

We also need to go back to innocence–just like the kids in the video!

About Catherine

Far from perfect, but enjoying life as a non-perfect and flawed individual at 60 years young. I'm still wondering what I'll be when I grow up! The characters in my life's screenplay include my better half. He is a refined Frenchman who grew up in Paris and summered in St. Tropez. I grew up in Long Island and summered in Long Island. I am not refined. My three grown children are also a big part of my life. For their sake, they happily live where their careers have taken them! But I can still mother them from a distance! I write about the mundane. I write about deeply shallow issues. But whatever I write or muse about--it'll always be a bit on the humorous and positive side! It's all good!
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22 Responses to Please. Don’t EVER Forget!

  1. ranu802 says:

    I loved the song. Your post is encouraging and interesting. 🙂

  2. Jean says:

    Beautifully, beautifully written. Your playground friend’s firefighter son. OMG OMG OMG. How oh how does a mother survive that. What a hero he was. Rest in peace.

    • Catherine says:

      Thanks Jean. I have no scope of the bravery of that woman…..there were more…Some of the teenaged boys who taught Jake and his best buddy to play baseball perished as well…there were just so many….XOXOXO..

  3. Olive Ole says:

    Oh how beautifully written! Let us not forget!

    I remember seing this on cnn. I was on maternityleave with the Karate Kid. I had just sat down while my son was napping and i was flipping channels. Just saw the plane crash in the first building and wondered what movie this was, could resemble die hard. My next thought was when did cnn start sending movies. When i realized it was real, my jaw dropped!

    Absolutely terrible! Let us not forget!

  4. This was an encouraging way to remember a very sad anniversary!

  5. spearfruit says:

    Well said – thanks Catherine! I dedicated my post today to this important day in our lives. I still remember exactly what I was doing when I first heard the news. I also remember the weeks after and the feelings I had about this event. I will never forget!

  6. Jane Billman says:

    I remember hearing the news on NPR in my cube ….. And wanting to call my family to hear their voices to make sure they were ok…… Xo

    • Catherine says:

      Jane–I know what you mean. When I called my son at UT, I was so concerned about him..but he said that the other students were so amazing and lent many comforting shoulders. I felt much better knowing that–I also felt so much better when Roman and Oona came home from school. It really was a day that nobody will forget…

  7. Tejaswi says:

    And my first thought was “Holy shit! my cousin works in that building” … but it was not so tragic after all, a day later she called up to say that she had not even reached the place because luckily the trains were delayed or something..

  8. Leslie Preston says:

    A national tragedy that turned strangers into friends for about a week. We were on a little vacation, traveling to Winslow, AZ, in the middle of nowhere,listening to an audio book. When the book was finished, we thought we’d scan the area to pick up some music. We then heard a man talking, talking, talking. It was Mayor Giuliani. I thought for a moment that he was doing a remake of War of the Worlds that Orson Wells had read over the radio which had put so many people into a panic. OMG! We reached Winslow and dashed to the bar in La Posada Hotel, keeping our eyes peeled to the television, watching the rerun of that plane crashing into the building. I still have a little beaded flag pin that I bought and wore during that time.

  9. Catherine says:

    Leslie–it’s true strangers WERE friends–but for a week. I wish we could have turned that week into a lifetime!!! To this day, I shut the TV off when I see that footage…I still cannot look at it…

  10. nathalie says:

    bad memories …i remember we were in holidays with our littles in the south of France … and we became all americans ….no more words…

  11. calensariel says:

    We turned the TV on that morning over breakfast just in time to see the second tower get hit and fall. I was still in shock four hours later when I took my deposit for work to the bank. The streets were just desert — except for a man who was pulling his little girl along in a wagon. It was a poorer section of town and I wondered if he even knew what had happened. It looked so innocent and AMERICAN. And I remember so clearly thinking, American will never be innocent again. Can we ever go back? I wish with all my heart we could, but I fear that answer is no. Too much hate and violence has been released. But still we hope, don’t we… Can’t imagine, Catherine, how it must have felt to be so up close and personal with it all. Hugs, my friend.

    • Catherine says:

      Thank you for the hugs! They are warm and comforting. I wish we could go back to more innocent days but that is definitely in the past. Our world is not in a good place–but we can only try to make it just a bit better! XOXOXOXO!!!

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